June ‘13
Insight Interview

June ‘13
Meet The Planners
Meet The Planners


    


Extending the milieu of Insight's ''I Want This Job' section is a special spotlight on three of the most eminent and ingenious planners and coordinators responsible for some of the most convivial and enlivening ceremonies and events being celebrated in the Cairo scene: Get an inside look into their M.O., their work code, the nature of the profession and how they thrived so gleefully to become one of the most in-demand and touted event planners in the Egyptian market today

What is your personal mission statement?

I was always terrible in writing mission statements'¦ but here it goes:


Where do you see yourself five years from now?

At byGanz, just hopefully with a higher salary and bonus.


Which super power would you like to have?

Always torn between being invisible and being able to teleport!


What are the top five things that organizers should have in order to be successful?

Well in this field'¦


Honesty- Also, you have to able to accept constructive criticism too not just give it.


A misconception: That because we are 'party' organizers its all fun and games and not as serious as other 'corporate' jobs. It takes a lot of effort and time to put an excellent event together.


Tell us more about what you do.

I'm mainly responsible for booking the right DJs for the right events and for all communication between byGanz and the artists' agencies.


Where you are right now, has it been your dream since you were young or this is something you did not expect?

Hahahah I am at the busiest time in my life and the most rewarding and fun! Initially I was a political science major'¦ so no this was not really in the plan but to be fair it was always in my nature just not professionally. Even before I had this job I organized my parties myself (birthdays, xmas and valentines).


What can you do in your career that no one else can do?

Be a complete and utter B**** when I need to be'¦just not a hated one. It gets the job done perfectly.


Who has made the biggest impact on your career so far, and why?

Oh that's easy: Ahmed Ganzoury for sure! He really has an eye for details and the fact that he trusted me to handle a concept (the tea dance) that is so important to him. After all he is a very old friend before being my boss and I'd hate to disappoint him.


What do you love the most and least about your job?

What I love the most is the rewarding feeling after a very successful party when you see people having a great time and people talking about it for days after. I hate the stress-induced 24 hours before the party, to make sure everything is going according to plan, whether the DJ is arriving on time, whether the set up is perfect and of course the fights I have with Ganzoury!


Tell us about a crazy/funny situation/obstacle that you had to face during your profession?

The main obstacles we usually have are with the sound; RULE #1: NEVER should the sound get disconnected in a party, it's the worst thing that can happen and of course having to diffuse fights during the party is a pain in the a**.


What's the most difficult decision you've made in the last two years and how did you come to that decision?

Whether to continue living abroad or come back to Egypt. I was in Montreal for two and half years and I had the best experience as a 'student'. But working is different than being a student I wasn't willing to labor myself away for a foreign corporation just to get a passport.


What would your eulogy say about you?

'Death will not kill me, I will live through the people who love me the most and every-time they think of me and the time we had together I will live a little more'


A misconception: Everyone thinks that this job is stress free, parties.. parties and more parties. Well, reality check: It takes around two months to prepare for a big event which people come and enjoy for a couple of hours. While everyone is having a good time, we are still working making sure nothing goes wrong. But it's all worth it in the end! Best feeling is when all the stage performances are done and the fireworks hit! That very moment you feel like you're on top of the world.


Tell us more about what you do.

Well'¦we don't just organize events, we also organize activations. Some activations could last up to six weeks while others take less. Mainly what we do is plan and execute.


Where you are right now, has it been your dream since you were young or this is something you did not expect?

'Young''¦ no way. I wanted to become a police officer; running around with a gun and catching bad guys! How cool is that! I also wanted to become a lifeguard, doctor and a soccer player but I guess things change as you grow older :p I was part of the prom committee at school and I guess that's when I realized that I had a knack for the planning of events.


What can you do in your career that no one else can do?

The amazing thing about this job is that nothing is off-limits'¦ well not exactly but as long as it is technically doable and the client is impressed you've got the green light to proceed.


Who has made the biggest impact on your career so far, and why?

Definitely my friends & family; they show me endless support and they are the reason I keep going.


What do you love the most and least about your job?

Have you been to our office? It's AMAZING! I work with an amazing team! As for the least, some things are better left unsaid :P


What is your greatest failure, and what did you learn from it?

I don't believe in failure only lessons learnt. But so far so good! Haven't really messed up'¦ yet! ;p


Tell us about a crazy/funny situation/obstacle that you had to face during your profession?

No one understands what goes on behind the scenes! I've seen some of the craziest and funniest things happen. It's insane!


What's the most difficult decision you've made in the last two years and how did you come to that decision?

Decisions suck! And the older you get the harder they get! I'm a Libra, that means it's impossible for me to be totally decisive! Every decision I make seems impossible!


What are the top five things that organizers should have in order to be successful?

Dedication- Honesty- Family- Support and meeting the love of my life, my dog VODKA!


What is your personal mission statement?

Live and let Live!!!


Where do you see yourself five years from now?

I live for NOW! Ask me again in five years and will let you know!


Which super power would you like to have?

The power to have several super powers!! Amazing!!


What would your eulogy say about you?

'Live and let live: she exemplified it'.


Unexpected challenges: Worn out pair of converse. I hate shoe shopping for myself.

A misconception: People think I am a party animal.


Tell us more about what you do.

I mainly handle the logistics part of the event. Production, set up, entertainment, schedules etc. and occasionally door selection'¦


Where you are right now, has it been your dream since you were young or this is something you did not expect?

Never expected it. I'm an IT programming grad, my parents are doctors and graduates from Al Azhar university'¦ safe to say, no one in the family expected that.


What can you do in your career that no one else can do?

No one can be 'Smiley'(my nickname).


Who has made the biggest impact on your career so far and why?

It is very difficult to say, as it is not just one person. Adham Ghanem was the one who first got me into events in 2003 - 2007 I probably worked with him on over 30 concerts during that time. Waseem and Sebastien taught me how to be deal with demanding clients. That was my catalyst.


What do you love the most and least about your job?

The most: good looking people everywhere'¦ the least: people, everywhere, ALL the time.


What is your greatest failure, and what did you learn from it?

'Greatest failure' is a very strong term. I have done mistakes, I learnt from some, or got yelled at for some, but sh** happens.


Tell us about a crazy/funny situation/obstacle that you had to face during your profession?

I was handling the door at one of our events, and by this point I have been up for about 48 hours and setting up for about 20 hours. Mr. Naguib Sawiris walks to the door (in a hotel he also happens to own) and asks 'How much are the tickets to get in?'. I say, 'There are no tickets sir, it's a guest list. Is your name on the list?' He says 'Maybe'. I look at the guest list and ask him 'Can you please give me your name?' By this point Sebastien realized I'm on auto-pilot mode, came to the door and asked him to enter, looks at me and says 'Seriously dude!'


What's the most difficult decision you've made in the last two years and how did you come to that decision?

Switching my wardrobe from shorts, cartoon t-shirts and sneakers to shirts, well-fit jeans and leather shoes'¦my boss made me do it.


What are the top five things that organizers should have in order to be successful?

1. Work till you drop


What is your personal mission statement?

Have fun, focus on quality work and enjoy the ride


Where do you see yourself five years from now?

Having a drink on the beaches of Seychelles with Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers.


Which super power would you like to have?

Teleportation.


What would your eulogy say about you?

Probably, my roommate Nicole would be giving the eulogy: 'It was probably his liver, that's why he didn't make it. Now let's party'